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  • Writer's pictureNonprofit Learning Lab

5 Ways to Create Engagement In Your Virtual Trainings

Updated: Jun 9, 2023

Looking to boost participant engagement in your virtual trainings? Do you lead a lot of trainings, workshops and orientations? Need some new ideas for when you host your next in-person training? Icebreakers, energizers and training rituals can all help create connection and participant engagement in virtual training and online workshops.

Here are some of our favorite ways to start off a virtual training. You can also use these tips for in-person workshop, gatherings or orientations. Add some spice to your trainings!

Trivia: Ask two to three trivia questions at the start of your workshop. You can have workshop participants answer via a poll, chat or make it into a competition and send everyone into a breakout room. Make the trivia questions related to why you all have gathered perhaps focus them on the history of your organization, school or agency. Let the competition begin!

Do something physical: Ask your participants to take a deep breath, stretch and even close their eyes. This process may only take about 10-15 seconds but it can help get your workshop participants focused and ready to engage. When your workshop participants are focused, it will be easier for you to facilitate online.

Music: Raise the energy level in the virtual or in person space. Play big band music or some light classical music to welcome in participants.

Writing Prompt: Sometimes when participants enter my trainings or workshops, I like to ask a question to attendees can learn from others. My favorite questions lately are: What is your favorite app on your phone? What is your favorite book? What is your favorite podcast? This provides others in your workshop, training or orientation with new resources to browse.

Show & Tell: If why you are gathering people together in the online or in-person setting is to build relationships, then think about facilitating an activity or icebreaker that helps to foster relationships among colleagues. Ask folks to grab an item that has had meaning to them in 2020 or an item in their pocket or purse or on the desk that has a story. Give participants an opportunity to share either in a large group or in a breakout room if you have time.

What are you doing to connect with your participants in your virtual sessions or online trainings? ? We host a monthly deep dive Train the Trainers workshop. This is a great training for facilitators, trainers, instructors and anyone looking to incorporate new ideas into their virtual training or in-person workshops or trainings. Learn more about our Train the Trainers workshop:

#train the trainer



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